ISIS Fight: Samantha Power Can't Foresee U.S. Ground Forces

Image: US Ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Power
US Ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Power gives a press conference on the Ebola virus in Brussels on October 30, 2014. The Ebola outbreak that has been ravaging west Africa has claimed 4,922 lives, according to the latest update from the WHO. The vast majority of deaths were in Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone. JOHN THYS / AFP - Getty Images

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Samantha Power, the American ambassador to the United Nations, said on Thursday that the fight against ISIS will require ground troops, “but they aren’t going to be American ground troops.”

“You have to get the Iraqis and ultimately the Syrian moderate opposition groups up so they can fight the fight on the ground,” Power said on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.” “There has to be a fight on the ground. You can’t do this by air. Everybody acknowledges that.”

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President Barack Obama sent Congress a proposal Wednesday that would authorize the military campaign against ISIS for no longer than three years and prohibit “enduring offensive ground forces.”

But members of Congress from both parties expressed skepticism, and some called the language too vague.

On “Morning Joe" on Thursday, Power was pressed on whether she could foresee a moment when Iraqi troops aren’t up to the task and Obama decides the threat is great enough to the United States that American ground troops have to fight.

“I don’t see that day at this point,” she said. “I think President Obama really does believe, given what we’re been through as a country and given what we need the Iraqis to do, that it’s important to signal that this is not the Iraq war of old and we're not moving in that direction.”


— Erin McClam